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Investment Q&A

Not investment advice or solicitation to buy/sell securities. Do your own due diligence and/or consult an advisor.

Q: Is it possible to choose a favourite for a 1-1/2 to 2 year hold with the expectation of a reasonable yield while rates remain near current levels, and a capital gain as (if) they begin to fall?

HBND vs XBB or something preferable?

I'm assuming they all provide yield that will be treated as interest and not eligible divs. If so, preferred account type?

Read Answer Asked by Peter on December 08, 2023
Q: I am considering getting into bond ETF's, given that we are apparently hitting pause on rate hikes and will potentially begin to cut rates in 2024. I realize that you cannot predict timing but would you consider this a good time to be getting into bonds?

What is your view on bond ETF's FCGB and DXDB, or can you offer another bond ETF to consider?

Thank you
Read Answer Asked by Timothy on November 29, 2023
Q: I want to take advantage of capital gains in bonds that I expect to occur as rates decline but I am unsure whether I will get that benefit with an ETF like XBB as much as with individual bonds. Can you tell me how that works with the etf? I assume as they buy new bonds at to replace their maturing ones, that will take away the capital gains advantage as they buy them at par in the higher rate market.
Read Answer Asked by Maria on November 20, 2023
Q: I am looking to simplify the management of my RRSP and my wifeís RRSP by shifting from stocks to ETFs. Iím thinking that it would be easiest to manage if I have 1 ETF for Canadian Equities, 1 for US equities, 1 for International Equities and 1 for bonds/ fixed income.

We have a 10-15 year time horizon so ETFs with a growth orientation would be preferred.


Canadian Equities
US Equities
international Equities
Bonds/ fixed income

Read Answer Asked by Gregory on November 14, 2023
Q: Hi there, with all the buzz about fixed income, Gics, bonds etc. I feel like maybe I should be increasing my exposure in my RRSP. I am retired and definitely have a diversified portfolio more slanted toward div paying solid equity companies.

I know you canít give personal advice but what might be a good way to tweak my portfolio to increase fixed income exposure for 5-10 years ie gic or bond ladder, ETFs, individual bonds or?

Or should I stay in dividends and forget about it?

Ok thank you!
Read Answer Asked by Robert on September 29, 2023
Q: Hello 5i, common question for you but I have very little bond exposure and was looking to start building a fixed income portfolio. Can you give me your current top 5 bond picks (assuming ETF's). This can be USA or Canada bonds.
Read Answer Asked by Dean on September 22, 2023
Q: We have 30% allocated in our registered accounts for fixed. (currently 10% each for CBO, ZAG and XBB) Are these the best options for today and the next year(s)? Also see XLB recommended recently and wondering if we should be adding or replacing any of the above?
Appreciate your opinion
Thanks Doug
Read Answer Asked by Doug on September 18, 2023
Q: hi,
can I get your opinion on the Aug. 9th Globe and Mail article by David Rosenberg and Bhawana Chhabra, "...It's time for investors to revisit their asset mix." And are you able to provide a few Canadian dollar ETF's to buy ( US treasury index? other? ), if you would in fact recommend that?
thanks, Chris
Read Answer Asked by chris on August 11, 2023
Q: Hi there,

Can you please suggest Canadian-listed ETFs for the bond portion of a long-term portfolio? I'm interested in diversification.


Read Answer Asked by Chris on August 01, 2023
Q: I listed in descending order securities that under performed since their 2022 highs. Please rank the securities in order of the best chance to recover their losses when we get back to the risk on mode. Thank you
Read Answer Asked by Richard on July 25, 2023
Q: Good morning,

With bond rates moving higher can you suggest your top 3 bond etf's to gain exposure at a low cost. Would holding these in a registered or cash account be best? As always thank you for your time
Read Answer Asked by Kolbi on July 17, 2023
Q: I have 2 unregistered accounts and hold too much money in HISAs. I would like to invest more in Horizon's total return ETFs that pay no distributions. I have been looking at HBB but the chart looks nothing like similar Canadian bond etfs. Today, July 10th, HBB is trading at the same level it did 5 years ago but XBB is 13% lower today, VAB 13% lower and ZAG 15.2% lower. Can you explain this large difference? Should HBB now track in a similar way to XBB? Thanks!
Read Answer Asked by Grant on July 13, 2023
Q: Supposing that an investor had three registered accounts of roughly equal size that they wanted to change from equity ETF's to a fixed income allocation for their portfolio, and these accounts would have to be converted to RIF's in 6 years. Let's also assume that we get one or two more small rate hikes this year, then interest rates flatten and begin to come down slowly over the following several years. Which of three options would you choose on a risk/reward basis? 1. Just hold money market funds currently paying 4.5%+ 2. Barbell XSB and XLB using two accounts, and put XBB (or ZAG) in the third (avg. yield close to 3 %? with potential cap. gains) 3. Put TLT in all three, yield close to 3%? maybe highest potential cap. gain? With the BOC policy rate going up close to 5 points since the start of 2022 the bond funds above fell anywhere from 10%+ to 30%+. Does that imply that if the BOC rate went back down 2.5% that they would rise 5%+ to 15%+, or you can't make that kind of straight line assumption? Maybe there is a way better option, but I don't really want to tie up funds in GIC's and don't want to try to pick individual bonds either. I also considered something like PSA but no cap gain upside there and the money markets probably pay as much interest or more. Thanks for your thoughts.
Read Answer Asked by Stephen R. on July 05, 2023
Q: Hi 5i team,

I haven't put any money into fixed income yet. Do you have any suggestions for fixed income ETFs or other products worth looking into?

Thank you,

Read Answer Asked by Matt on June 22, 2023
Q: Question for the 5i team. I took over our investment accounts about 8 years ago and since then bonds were not particularly attractive. As bonds my be about to have their day in the sun I feel it may be time to consider adding them to our portfolio. I however lack the knowledge and experience to make informed decisions at this time. The first part of the question is, can you recommend any informative reading or sites that would be of benefit to a novice bond investor. The second part would be a quick summary of your outlook for bonds, longterm, short term, etc and opinion as to which bonds, ie treasuries, to junk, would offer high yield without excessive risk for young retirees. Thanks for all your helpful and sage advice.
Read Answer Asked by Robert on June 09, 2023
Q: How would you recommend adding a small/prudent amount of exposure to bonds in the current market environment?
Read Answer Asked by Patrick on April 21, 2023
Q: I am looking at adding a 15 to 20 percent bond component to my portfolio. From the mix of laddered, aggregate, short/long term and high yield ETFís listed. Which would you recommend and why? Please let me know if you have other possible suggestions? Thank you
Read Answer Asked by Myron on March 02, 2023
Q: I'd like your assessment of MKB versus aggregate bond etfs like XBB, ZAG, and VAB. Has MKB performed better than the listed etfs? If it has performed better then is it because the etf has taken on additional risk to achieve the higher return? How might one incorporate MKB into the bond portion of their portfolio? Is it worth the higher fees?
Read Answer Asked by Robert on February 16, 2023